The RockPop Gallery blog has just posted an interview with artist/illustrator John Lorenzi about the making of the cover for Megadeth's 2007 album United Abominations. It is an excellent account of how the Lorenzi came to create the cover and the creative process involved.
Founded by Mike Goldstein, the Portland, Oregon-based RockPop Gallery showcases the best artistic and photographic talent from all areas of today's music industry. Their ongoing series of interviews are intended to give ;the music and art fan, an inside look at the making of the illustrations, photographs and designs of many of the industry's most-recognized and influential images.
Posted by: dingers
UnCovered Interview - United Abominations album cover by John Lorenzi
UnCovered Interview - John Lorenzi and the making of the cover for Megadeth's United Abominations album
Subject - the making of the cover of the Megadeth album titled United Abominations, released in 2007 on RoadRunner Records.
As it is true in most of the careers of "creative types" - the folks that rely on whatever it is inside them that makes them want to devote themselves to making things (art, music, literature, etc.) that somehow stimulate others - sometimes, you just need a break to be discovered and for your career to get some sort of a boost. Not that that break will necessarily lead to fame, riches and the adoration of the masses...sometimes, it just serves to introduce you to a patron or two and helps kick-start your fan base to some degree. From there, it usually just takes a tireless work ethic, marketing savvy and gobs of luck before you can have a life-long career doing what you're passionate about.
Megadeth's Dave Mustaine has long shown a flair for invention, both in his music and how his musical efforts are promoted visually. In a song ("Skull Beneath The Skin") from their first record release in 1985, Mustaine describes a character - a macabre manifestation of "See/Hear/Speak No Evil" - who he then realized in an initial sketch he did (and then worked with a series of artists over the years to recreate to fit applications including album cover art, merchandise, music video/stage props, etc.). And, like other examples of iconic rock images done before and since, each artist's interpretation of Mr. Rattlehead would reflect - some more successfully than others (according to fans/critics) - the status of both the band's music, internal politics and the state of the world in which Vic "lived". In some cases, it seems clear that even a guy with all of his facial orifices sealed shut just can't get a break.
In the case highlighted here though - that of artist/illustrator John Lorenzi - his own break came as the result of an almost-first-place (!!) finish in a contest to redesign an iconic image - that of Vic Rattlehead - where he just hoped to gain a little notice and, perhaps, win a guitar for his kid...